Coronavirus pushes back Apple’s plans for employees to return to the office

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apple park
Apple Park won't be getting back to normal just yet.
Photo: Duncan Sinfield

Apple has delayed its call for employees to return to the office by at least a month, Bloomberg reported Monday. Employees will now return to Apple Park and other locations by October at the earliest.

In June, CEO Tim Cook said that employees should get ready to return by early September. This would be according to a hybrid model in which employees would work at least three days a week in the office, and the rest working from home. But COVID-19 has seemingly (temporarily) scuppered those plans.

Apple looks beyond Silicon Valley to turbocharge recruitment post-pandemic

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apple park
And shortly after finishing Apple Park, too.
Photo: Duncan Sinfield

Having only fairly recently completed its massive Apple Park campus in Cupertino, Apple’s now “ramping up” efforts to decentralize its workforce, says Mark Gurman in his latest “Power On” column for Bloomberg.

This means reluctantly embracing the idea that not everyone wants to live and work in Silicon Valley. While Apple execs have supposedly fought against this way of thinking for years, recruitment challenges are now causing them to reassess the situation.

Multicolored iMacs? Tim Cook tweets out photo of Apple’s rainbow stage

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Rainbow stage
Party time at Apple.
Photo: Tim Cook/Apple

You know it’s a special day at Apple when the company whips out its rainbow stage. Designed by Apple’s industrial design team, back when Jony Ive was in charge, the rainbow stage — adorned in Apple’s classic logo colors — made its debut in May 2019. That year, it was used for a concert by Lady Gaga for Apple employees.

With many Apple employees currently working from home, a concert after today’s event seems unlikely. Nonetheless, Tim Cook — who tweeted out a picture of the rainbow stage — is clearly in a party mood.

Apple asks retail employees to help with online customer support

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Like everyone else, Apple retail employees are being asked to work online.
Apple retail employees are being asked to become online employees to make using Apple.com better for customers.
Photo: Apple

Deirdre O’Brien, Apple’s retail boss, sent a video to retail employees this weekend asking them to sign up to help customers remotely. She also said they should expect store closures caused by the COVID-19 pandemic to continue “for some period of time.”

Separately, Apple told employees that it doesn’t expect to have everyone back in its corporate headquarters before the end of 2020.

Apple Park staff will begin returning to work on June 15

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Apple Park overhead.
But most employees won't return for months.
Photo: Apple

Apple Park staff have been told that they will begin returning to work in phases starting Monday, June 15, a new report claims.

A “very limited” number of workers will be allowed in the office on certain days, depending on their role — and there will be restrictions. Apple has reportedly warned employees that most won’t go back for several months.

These are the changes Apple Park is making as employees return from lockdown

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Apple leases new offices near to Apple Park
Apple Park is starting to get back to normal.
Photo: Duncan Sinfield

Just as it has with reopening Apple Stores, Apple is putting protective measures in place to keep employees safe as they return to Apple Park after lockdown.

These measures include optional COVID-19 swab testing, temperature checks, closed kitchens, social distancing measures, and an insistence on face masks.

Apple leases new offices near Apple Park

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Apple leases new offices near to Apple Park
Not running out of space at Apple Park already, guys?
Photo: Duncan Sinfield

An estimated 12,000 people can comfortably work together in Apple Park. But Apple’s a big company — and 12,000 people is only a drop in the ocean.

For that reason, Apple has leased six floors in a nearby office building, just six minutes’ drive from its enormous circular headquarters at One Apple Park Way.

Apple Park to host Toys for Tots open house

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Apple Park
Apple Park is opening its doors to the neighbors.
Photo: Matthew Roberts/Maverick Imagery

Cupertino residents that live near Apple’s new campus are being invited inside Apple Park for a holiday toy drive.

Email invites to the exclusive event started going out this week to people who live near Apple Park. Apple Park has a big visitor center but rarely lets outsiders inside the spaceship campus.

Take a look at the invite: